Carbon credit route for rew road tech in NE
Bongaigaon, Feb. 6: Assam is looking at earning carbon credits by using cold mix technology for road construction.
“This technology reduces carbon emission and causes less harm to health of environment and humans. We could well earn carbon credits through it,” director, Road Research Laboratory, Assam, Ranjit Kumar Das, said.
A total of 1,500km of roads in the Northeast have been constructed using cold mix technology and the people have got good results. Das said the technology could reduce fatalities caused to workers engaged in road construction using the conventional hot mix technology.
“Around 50 to 60 workers engaged in road construction through the hot mix technology suffer injuries,” he said.
A demonstration on cold mix technology was shown at Kajalgaon in Bongaigon district today.
The Central Road Research Institute has given an exclusive licence to Bitchem — a private company in the Northeast — to use the technology.
“Initially, it took me time to convince people. Over the years, smoke unfortunately, has become synonymous with road construction. I am happy at the difference cold mix has brought about. People can now compare between the two. Once rural communities saw the benefits and its safety, they will be impressed,” said Rudra Pathak a local contractor who has used the technology in Bongaigaon.
According to the National Rural Road Development Agency of the ministry of rural development, road construction and repair work done using hot mix is often sub-standard and there is a need to use cold mix.
“There are many new environment-friendly and sustainable technologies available for road construction, which are specially suited to hilly, cold or rainy conditions like in the Northeast and it is imperative we use these to enhance rural connectivity and prosperity by increasing the construction season,” director, Central Road Research Institute (CRRI), S. Gangopadhyay, said.
In the conventional hot mix method of road construction, bitumen is heated in drums near the site of road construction. For the bitumen to have strong binding properties it must be heated up to a particular temperature — 160 degrees Celsius — during normal weather conditions. In large parts of rural roads or countryside, there is no way to check the temperature of the bitumen, causing sub-standard roads. This technique also exposes workers to various hazards. It is time-consuming as well.
In cold mix, no heating is required and bitumen emulsion comes ready to be mixed with concrete. This ensures the rollout is much faster as the complex process of heating the bitumen is skipped. It causes no smoke, is safer for workers, and the average road layout is 2.5 times faster than conventional method.